Ballet dancer Michaela DePrince lived in Sierra Leone during the country's civil war.
DePrince recalled a picture she found in Sierra Leone of a ballet dancer that gave her inspiration.
"It was a picture of a ballerina… And seeing that dancer and seeing it at such a terrible time of my life, it just completely gave me hope and I thought to myself: if I ever got adopted maybe I could be just like this person. And I just kept holding onto that magazine until I got adopted. And now I'm a ballerina. Well, hoping to become a ballerina!"
Despite the overwhelming challenges of surviving a war and coming to America, Michaela has emerged on top.